Putting Your Garden to Bed
The weather has changed not only are the hours of sunlight becoming less and less but there is a chill in the air that says Fall is in full swing and winter is on its way.
It is time to put the garden to bed and let it rest until the spring. If you have not planted your fall bulbs now is the time to do so.
Most spring flowering bulbs will need a high organic, well drained, slightly acidic (pH 6-7) soil in a sunny location. This means at least six hours and preferably eight.
Spring bulbs must be planted root side down. If you do not, come spring, you will be wondering where the bulbs are. Always, plant spring bulbs two to three times as deep as the bulbs are tall.
There are leaves to rake. However, fallen leaves are not garbage and do not, I repeat, do not toss them away. You can put some in your compost bin, use some to add a layer of mulch to your garden beds and the rest, bag and put aside for next year's garden.
Get a green garbage bag or two, poke a few holes into the bag and fill them with leaves. If you have recently cut the lawn, add some grass clippings. Next, add a shovelful of soil to the mix, shake and you are on your way to creating a leaf mould that the spring garden bed will appreciate.
Tidy the garden beds get rid of any debris that might provide shelter for the creatures who want to nap over the winter and munch on your garden as it emerges in the spring. Removing debris can also help reduce disease. You want next year’s garden to get off to a good start.
Fall is also a time to prune the plants that need it, roses for example, so that they will grow back strong and healthy the following year. Perennials will benefit from being cut back now.
I like to take a good look around the garden at this time of year and see if there are any spots that need filling, any plants that did not work out as I thought they would; in other words, the fall is a good time to look back over the season and review what went on. If you keep a journal and this is a good idea, record your observations. They will come in handy in the early spring when you are reviewing your gardening plan.
- Pruning Schedule
Plants, shrubs and Hemerocallis in my garden